13
votes
4answers
4k views

Why did the Catholic church stop supporting Genesis creation?

I read that cardinal Ratzinger stated the story in Genesis 1 and 2 should not be interpreted as a literal account of the beginning of things. In spite of recent events like this, they have always been ...
13
votes
2answers
994 views

Who is Lillith?

The character Lilith, while not mentioned in the Bible, turns up in Christian mythology as Adam’s first wife. (She’s mentioned, for example, in CS Lewis’ Chronicles of Narnia.) Where ...
13
votes
1answer
2k views

Is there a Biblical ban on gambling? [closed]

Most churches and many Christians I know are strongly against gambling, but I can't recall any passage in the Bible that declares that we shouldn't gamble. Does such a passage exist? To clarify I'm ...
13
votes
4answers
1k views

Why is Adam considered the original sinner? [closed]

In the Biblical account, Eve is the first to eat the forbidden fruit. Yet still the blame gets put on Adam and later on in the Bible it states that sin entered the world through one man. Why is Adam ...
13
votes
5answers
2k views

Does God have free will? [closed]

To clarify the question - when I mention God here I am referring to God the Father and by free will, the best non-contradictory definition according to the Bible I have heard is "the ability to act ...
13
votes
5answers
391 views

Is God of Anger or of Love? [closed]

Numbers 25 shows God as a god who destroys and kills anyone who aligns him/herself with the wrong deity. However, Matthew 5:39 talks about how we should "not resist an evil person". How can we ...
12
votes
6answers
6k views

Since Jesus death paid our sin debt in full, why do Christians still die?

In Genesis chapter two God places the burden of death on man's sin(disobedience of God). Genesis 2:17 KJV But of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, thou shalt not eat of it: for in the ...
12
votes
8answers
1k views

Should a Christian read books known to be heretical / blasphemous / against Christianity? [closed]

Inspired by: May Christians read self improvement books? May we read un-Christian books? Should we? In what circumstances? What guidelines should be used to decide on this? Some examples of ...
11
votes
1answer
1k views

In Mormonism, how is the doctrine of Adam & Eve inability to have children prior to the Fall explained?

Inspired by this answer to a previous question, in which the answerer stated: "For example, the Book of Mormon adds the belief that Adam and Eve could not have children before the Fall." ...
11
votes
2answers
2k views

What was Adolf von Harnack's case that Priscilla wrote Hebrews?

One of the theories about the authorship of Hebrews is that Priscilla (the wife of Aquilla) wrote Hebrews. While it is by no means universal (indeed many suggestions have been made), and at least in ...
11
votes
6answers
3k views

Why do many Protestant congregations not require attendance at services on Christmas and Easter?

It came to my attention from living, driving around and listening to Christian radio that many Protestants do not have any services on what Catholics would consider solemnities (Christmas and Easter ...
11
votes
1answer
11k views

What does the Bible say about the appearance of angels? [closed]

In Christian art, angels are often depicted as winged human-like creatures. However, I'm curious if there is any justification for this in the Bible? I've sometimes heard that there isn't, so that's ...
10
votes
4answers
280 views

If we want to know what the Bible says about an issue, what methods can help us to find all the relevant scriptures?

If we want to know what the Bible says about an issue, what methods can help us to find all the relevant scriptures? Particularly if someone is looking for a "clear, unambiguous, direct statement in ...
10
votes
4answers
4k views

What is the significance of the four laws given to early Christians who were not ethnically Jews? [closed]

In the early years of Christianity, there was a lot of debate whether people of non-Jewish origin should follow the strict Mosaic laws, especially circumcision. A consensus was made that for pagans ...
10
votes
4answers
1k views

What is “ Origenism”

I ran across this quote in the Catholic Encyclopedia: Pope St. Anastasius I A pontiff who is remembered chiefly for his condemnation of Origenism. A Roman by birth, he became pope in 399, ...
10
votes
7answers
24k views

What does it mean to be “born of water” in John 3:5?

John 3:5 (NKJV) Jesus answered, “Most assuredly, I say to you, unless one is born of water and the Spirit, he cannot enter the kingdom of God. Does "born of water" means baptism i.e., ...
10
votes
1answer
6k views

What is the Biblical basis for baby dedications?

Many churches do not practice infant baptisms, because they believe that in the Bible baptism is taught to be something done after a person chooses to follow Christ. As an alternative, many of those ...
10
votes
2answers
668 views

Are the images we draw of Jesus correct?

Lately I heard that, as an inhabitant of ancient Israel, it is more likely that Jesus had dark skin and probably had hair that was a little curly. Why is it that illustrations always show him with ...
10
votes
5answers
32k views

What's the difference between the Judgment Seat of Christ and the Great White Throne Judgment? [closed]

The Bible speaks of the "Judgment Seat of Christ" as well as the "Great White Throne" judgment. What is the difference between these two judgments and who will be at each? For we must all appear ...
10
votes
2answers
5k views

How did the Crusades impact modern Christianity? [closed]

How do the crusades impact modern day Christianity own sense of morality and spirituality? What do these things mean to a person of faith? The Crusades, from Wikipedia The Crusades were a series ...
9
votes
4answers
2k views

How do protestants understand Jesus' statement that unless we eat the flesh of the Son of Man we will have no life? [duplicate]

Catholics teach that they literally eat the body of Jesus during communion, a belief called Transubstantiation. Protestant churches mostly do not share this belief and there is no obligation to ...
9
votes
3answers
83k views

What is the significance of changing the names of Abram to Abraham and Sarai to Sarah?

I would briefly reconstruct from Genesis, the circumstances leading to this change in names. In the very beginning of His conversation with Abram, God says to Abram: Gen: 12:2 (NET) Then I ...
9
votes
3answers
6k views

In what language was the Book of Matthew written?

I have heard it taught in several places that Matthew was originally written in Hebrew and it's intended audience was the Jew (which does help explain why it seems a bit more vague on key Christian ...
9
votes
4answers
738 views

What practical effect do stock worship phrases, like “God be magnified”, have?

In our worship to God many times we utter phrases like "God I magnify you" or "God be magnified". I used to wonder, is God really magnified by saying those words? How can we really magnify God or have ...
9
votes
3answers
15k views

Why isn't the virgin birth of Jesus mentioned in all of the gospels? Does it matter?

I recently saw Bill Maher's documentary and he mentions that the virgin birth is only mentioned in two of the gospels. He goes on to bug Christian people several times by asking questions such as "How ...
9
votes
1answer
343 views

Is veneration worship?

I answered this question calling adoration and veneration honor given to God and the saints accordingly. If you look at the edits for my answer, I think I had some confusion as to the terminology ...
9
votes
4answers
7k views

Are God, Son (Jesus) and The Holy Spirit Same? [duplicate]

I wonder whether God the Father, the Son (Jesus), and the Holy Spirit are actually the same? If the answer is "yes", why we can't we have our spiritual communication only with Jesus Christ?
9
votes
5answers
2k views

What is the Catholic position on Exodus 20:4?

This weekend my son and I participated in our Scouting council's annual Ten Commandments hike in which we walked to 10 different churches and heard a short talk on each of the 10 commandments from ...
9
votes
2answers
439 views

Before anything was created, did God already know the events that would unfold?

Before anything in our world was created, God was already there. Also, there is biblical evidence for omniscience. However, did God, prior to the creation of everything, already know the events that ...
9
votes
2answers
241 views

How are doxologies formed for common prayers?

I'm not sure of the exact definition, but a doxology seems to be a prayer tagged at the end which consists of some sort of invocation of the Blessed Trinity. I'm just wondering if the actual words ...
9
votes
1answer
393 views

How does Sola Scriptura understanding of the Bible affect the anagogical sense of the Bible?

A few times on this site, I've mentioned Jesus' commands that we should take Mary into our home when he tells John to 'behold his mother'. This is based on the idea that much of scripture can also be ...
9
votes
3answers
2k views

Old testament: where is Eternal Life and Judgement discussed?

When Jesus was teaching of eternal life (Rich man and Lazarus, also Martha and Mary's brother Lazarus being raised from death) the people listening didn't think it was a new and novel idea: your soul ...
9
votes
1answer
859 views

What is the purpose of church discipline?

What is the end goal or purpose of church discipline and how is this defined in Scripture? What is the relation (if any) between church discipline and God's discipline? Lets keep the implementation ...
8
votes
1answer
522 views

Modern Book of Jasher - Genuine?

I've been reading the book of Jasher (supposedly the one quoted in the book of Samuel) and its quite amazing. But I ask - what is the proof or lack of proof on it's authenticity? There are however a ...
8
votes
3answers
759 views

Roman Catholic: Is piracy of information and media wrong in all circumstances?

I've come across people who claim piracy to be a theft that breaks one of the Ten Commandments (a sin against God). Yet, I've considered the matter and opined the following. 1) Equal Opportunities: ...
8
votes
1answer
654 views

How are prayer and asking the saints to intercede distinguished?

The Roman Catholic and Orthodox churches encourage us to ask the dead saints to intercede for us. To quote from Software Monkey's answer to another question: First off, it's useful to understand ...
8
votes
6answers
2k views

Why is rejection of the Trinity heresy, and not just wrong?

There are plenty of instances where Christians systematically believe something false and directly contradicting biblical teachings, yet they are not deemed to be so errant as to disqualify them from ...
8
votes
2answers
454 views

What's the Biblical basis for the rapture? [duplicate]

I don't like questioning anyone's faith but one of my friends is a mainstream Christian (Uniting Church) and she believes very firmly in the phenomenon of "rapture". As I understand it, rapture is ...
8
votes
3answers
1k views

Did Jesus have Free Will? (Arianism) [closed]

This is NOT this question I've been reading a lot about Arianism and this is an interesting point that they have: Arius believed the Son Jesus was capable of His own free will of right and ...
8
votes
1answer
321 views

Protestant explanation of an immortal spirit

Some Christian denominations think that the spirit is not immortal and that death is like sleeping. When Christ comes back he would resurrect the dead bodies from within the ground (like God made ...
8
votes
2answers
939 views

What is the Calvinist perspective on regeneration?

When do Calvinists consider an elect person to be regenerate? If it is at birth, then is it odd that someone who is "regenerate" is living in sin, up until the point of faith in Christ? And if it is ...
8
votes
3answers
23k views

What is the difference between Natural Law and Divine Law?

In Catholic understanding, there is a divine law and a natural law. Based on my reading, it seems like Divine Law = Revelation (as a Protestant would call it) and Natural Law = what you could deduce ...
8
votes
4answers
11k views

What is the role of the Holy Spirit in the Roman Catholic church?

What is the role of the Holy Spirit in the Roman Catholic church? When I search online, I mostly find stuff about filioque. But I want to know specifically what he does. What is his role? How does he ...
8
votes
1answer
576 views

Protestant numbering of the 10 Commandments

With the exception of Lutherans (who apparently use the same numbering system for the Decalogue as Catholics) Do other Protestants have a consistent method for numbering the 10 commandments? ...
8
votes
6answers
6k views

Why did God create a new covenant?

Why did God create a new covenant? It seems as if he had a covenant set in place in the Old Testament and provided a means for Israel to follow the covenant and offer sacrifices to atone for their ...
8
votes
2answers
920 views

Is it a problem for a Protestant to practice Yoga?

I know a lot of people who claim to be Christian but practice Yoga. I always thought (and Wikipedia seems to back me up on this) that Yoga was about meditation in Hinduism or Buddhism. Is practicing ...
8
votes
6answers
198 views

Does God want things? What are some of the things He wants, and how did we find out? [closed]

This question may appear brief, but I think it is simple enough to not need much background. Basically, I'm curious about the nature of God and His desires. Does He want things? What are some of the ...
7
votes
5answers
3k views

If Jesus was sinless then why was he baptized? [duplicate]

If Jesus was sinless what is the biblical bases for needing to be baptized by John? Mark 1:4-5 NIV John did baptize in the wilderness, and preach the baptism of repentance for the remission of ...
7
votes
3answers
1k views

What is the Biblical basis for believing that God punishes Christians for disobedience?

Suppose that a person is faithful and counted among those in Christ, and the person is disobedient in some manner. What is the Biblical basis for the idea that God will punish this Christian beyond ...
7
votes
1answer
6k views

What is the theological justification for only the priest drinking the wine in a Catholic Mass?

I recently attended a Catholic Mass for a funeral. When it came time for the observance of the Lord's Supper, only the priest drank the wine. There may be some protestant churches which also follow ...

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